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Prince George
County, VA

Lag in Census Numbers Stalls Policy Considerations by BOS


 

 

County of Prince George, Virginia

pg co logo

Board of Supervisors

Floyd M. Brown, Jr.- Chairman
Marlene J. Waymack - Vice Chair
Alan R. Carmichael
Donald R. Hunter
T.J. Webb

 

Percy C. Ashcraft
County Administrator
Phone:      (804) 722-8600
Facsimile: (804) 732-3604

 

 

For Immediate Release
February 24, 2021

 

For further information contact:
Percy C. Ashcraft – (804) 722-8600
Email: pashcraft@princegeorgecountyva.gov

Lag in Census Numbers Stalls
Policy Considerations by BOS



A lag in finalizing numbers for the 2020 Census at the Federal level has stalled any consideration to make new policy decisions regarding redistricting for the Prince George County Board of Supervisors and other jurisdictions across the nation.

Every 10 years, a new census is taken to ascertain an accurate number of people living in the United States.  The data is used for various purposes, including the redistricting of voting districts that can affect representation at the federal, state and local levels.

The Federal Census Bureau ended its compilation of statistics at the end of 2020.  This includes 73.2 percent of the population in Prince George County that filled out Census forms.

Since that time, there has been much confusion at the Federal level regarding finalizing the detailed population data iand returning it back to the states so state legislatures and County and City governments can react.

In Prince George County, discussions by the Board of Supervisors regarding possible redistricting of election districts or even shifting to single-member voting districts have been delayed because of the failure of getting 2020 Census information.  Interested citizens who would like to see discussion of these topics are growing frustrated and often aim misguided comments on social media at County Government.

“The Board of Supervisors has its hands tied right now until the Census numbers are passed down from the Federal level and upheld by the State Legislature,” commented Prince George County Administrator Percy Ashcraft.  “There is certainly interest in this subject, but supervisors cannot move forward without accurate information.”

At this time, there doesn’t seem to be a real deadline that is being observed by federal representatives.  Redistricting has delayed nominations of candidates for the 2022 elections already.

The Census Bureau missed its December deadline to report the data to Congress, blaming the pandemic for the delay.  Complicating matters were legal questions raised by attorney generals in several states when President Trump was still in office.

“We are in unchartered waters here,” Ashcraft said.  “Gathering Census date is complicated in a normal situation.  You add all the other issues and it is no wonder why there are delays.”

The Board of Supervisors appointed a Census Complete Count Committee in 2020 to monitor the results gathered by census takers.  That committee is in a lull now waiting to see if it will be needed further when the results are released.

Ashcraft said updates to the census process will be issued regularly by County Government media outlets. Residents will be notified of any meeting that will be called to discuss matters related to the census data.

 
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